Quantcast

Celtic again vulnerable to counter in Europe

576

20 minutes into last night’s Europa League game against Valencia, Celtic looked competent and in control, if not dangerous.  We had the majority of the ball (as we did for the rest of the game), enjoyed possession inside the Valencia box and had shots on target.

Valencia were probably happy to resist us for this opening period, but from that point onwards, they inhibited Celtic’s midfield from enjoying as much freedom.  Neither side made a chance worthy of the name until the opening goal, three minutes before the break.  Valencia’s second, four minutes after the interval, meant the tie was decided during a very short period of play.

While we opened well we failed to involve Oliver Burke throughout.  The only possession he got was to his feet with his back to goal, the ball invariably bouncing away from him.  Burke is a player who needs service into the channels – something that happened only once before the goals arrived.

For years I have shared fears here of Celtic playing so high up field against European opposition.  Tactics like this result in positives like “What a torrid opening four minutes we gave Juventus” before a counter-attack settles things.

I was actually encourage when Valencia started to compete more effectively midway through the first half, as our best game plan was to counter.  Keep it tight and play on the break, at this level, anything else is a ticket out of the tournament.  And that’s not just for Celtic, these are the tactics Valencia deployed.

The opening goal came through a poor attempt to play offside.  Jozo Simunovic stepped up as Parejo made the forward pass, forcing Sobrino into what should have been an offside position, but Emilio Izaguirre was four paces back, ostensibly, but not actually, covering Cheryshev.  Emilio did no better at the second goal, allowing Sobrino freedom of the box.  Insert the hoary old schoolboy analogy here.

There were things I liked, specifically, playing the ball out from the back.  With central defenders wide, full backs high and central mids deep, Scott Bain was able to find a player in space, 40 yards from goal, and start an attack.  This play is still in its infancy at Celtic, but we need to stick with it.

The impact of Odsonne Eduard, who played the last 30 minutes, was immediate.  It took defenders (plural) to close him down.  We also saw a new aspect to Timothy Weah, who came on at the same time as Edouard as a creative mid.  It was a curious performance from Timothy.  He was everywhere for five minutes, then stuck to position (presumably on instructions) and dropped out of things.

Central mid did not work.  Immediately after a defeat, there is a rabid tendency to find a scapegoat, which is seldom productive, but we need to ask the question why central mid didn’t work, and get it right for the qualifiers.  As for the defence, only Jozo will be around for the qualifiers, and he will most often be sitting beside us in the stands, so the consequences of these mistakes will not linger beyond May.

Valencia are not a PSG.  In competitive terms, I would put them between Salzburg and Leipzig.   I am not going to tell you we would put them out, but if we had played it tight, the tie would still be in the balance.

Click Here for Comments >
Share.

About Author

576 Comments

  1. Alasdair MacLean on

    Ah well, one Sevco poster has their troubles analysed…

     

     

    They need a massive influx of cash.

  2. Hi Bhoys

     

     

    I wonder if young master mc ginn is enjoying mid table anonymity with the big wage packet? Or does he wish he was heading for a place in history in a team about to win the TREBLE TREBLE.

     

     

    KEEP THE FAITH

  3. ONENIGHT

     

     

    There was nothing to have given them, except the maximum possible injury time of 3 minutes with no injuries and no physios on the pitch.

     

     

    Not even a dive CSC

  4. Gerrard is a very smart coach.

     

    Defoe wore the wrong boots limiting his diving ability and subverted his cunning plan.

     

    Such delicious irony that the ingrained and unnecessary cheating by Dallas has hindered their future success by putting the shameless cheating of him and his brethren in the spotlight.

     

    Forced that fenian compliance officer to do her actual job.

  5. The huns 3pts better off than they were last season…the worst in thier top flight history

     

     

    Will anyone in the media call SG out as the flop he is?

  6. As we’ve seen before anything can happen but that does not look like a team that’s making up even five points in 12 games

  7. If I’m Stevie Clarke tomorrow i would rest a few with an eye on Wednesday night, Killie wont get a better chance with mad dog still suspended. 90 minutes at full pelt against Celtic tomorrow wont help their cause.

  8. ALASDAIR MACLEAN on 16TH FEBRUARY 2019 5:09 PM

     

    Ah well, one Sevco poster has their troubles analysed…

     

     

     

    They need a massive influx of cash.

     

     

    That they have a fan of such erudite thinking has me speechless.

     

    I’m sure he wrote that while seated on a flat earth.

  9. I like a laugh at the zombies misfortunes – haven’t seen much of the two superstars they signed on big money loan deals but according to the inmates of zombie media they are ‘past it’ ‘done’ ‘f?,()?,d’

     

     

    Advice to Davis from one erudite chap was to ‘retire, go away or just f,?! off’

     

     

    The ‘high flying’ slippy g is also not the flavour of the month.

     

     

    If only there had been some precedent for semi retired EPL ‘stars’ coming to Scotland and not being able to hack it! If only ……..

     

     

    ?

  10. GlassTwoThirdsFull on

    Oglach on 16th February 2019 4:56 pm

     

    LOL, BBC reporter — Rangers close gap on Celtic

     

    ——–

     

    He is absolutely right, other than it not being Rangers, obviously.

     

    We can increase it tomorrow but we have to go out and get the business done.

     

    Concentrate on our own performances and we will be fine.

  11. Alasdair MacLean on

    I forgot about their replay against Kilmarnock on Wenesday

     

     

    Mcgregor plays an Morelos doesn’t.

     

     

    Interesting.

  12. Just who will Brendan go with at LB tomorrow? Johnny, Izzy or Calum? IMO I can’t see Izzy getting the nod after Thursdays performance but what do I know

  13. Oglach – Hayes might be the least worst option but then again my gut tells me play the natural left back at left back domestically. We should have enough in the locker to do them regardless.

     

     

    Eyes on the prize tomorrow. Hopefully that’ll mean whoever is LB isn’t called on to do too much defending.

  14. rangers media has a good thread on what they really need to do, and that is add 12,000 seats to ibrox. as they have 12000 on the waiting list. and the pay back time will only be `10 years.

     

     

    dave cunning ham king will be working on a debenture plan right now to get these bears to buy thier ten year seats off plan.

     

     

    the old loyalty card, if celtic had done me out of shares, debenture seats, my wee gold plaque on it, and maybe even my business out of some monies, i would need to be some fool to ever spend money on the new entity, i mean how thick are these peepel.

  15. CORKCELT on 16TH FEBRUARY 2019 5:01 PM

     

    Win tomorrow & we win the Title. 8 points plus goals and their bubble is burst. Main thing is don;t hand them a lifeline.

     

    ______________

     

     

    Totally agree. Psychology Exocet to be launched tomorrow. A few changes required I think to help get over Thursday. Edouard (alongside Burke), Weah ( behind Burke), Ajer (Simunovic, due to pitch) and someone else at left back to come in. Win league tomorrow and let’s give a better account of ourselves on Thursday.

  16. onenightinlisbon on

    BOURNESOUPRECIPE on 16TH FEBRUARY 2019 5:12 PM

     

    ONENIGHT

     

     

     

    There was nothing to have given them, except the maximum possible injury time of 3 minutes with no injuries and no physios on the pitch.

     

     

     

    Not even a dive CSC

     

     

    Correct but when has that stopped them!

  17. Can’t help but think Celtic missed a trick not acting on my excellent Defoe iidea. He might be getting on a bit but i strongly suspect he’ll prove a game changing signing for Rangers. A class act. A very bold, ambitious move ??

     

     

    Keith off the radar Jackson

  18. NOTTHEBUS on 16TH FEBRUARY 2019 5:14 PM

     

    The huns 3pts better off than they were last season…the worst in thier top flight history

     

     

    Will anyone in the media call SG out as the flop he is?

     

     

    _____________

     

    Also need to consider what they’ve spent this year in terms of higher salaries. Looks like the kitchen sink will be going down the plughole ?

  19. Alasdair MacLean on

    I kind of like how the huns and the authorities – change of fixtures – have almost completely discounted Kilmarnock’s chances on Wednesday.

     

     

    I suppose the police HAD to look at the potential ties … but that’s not the way it is being reported generall.

     

     

    Sevco are playing Aberdeen in the next round.

     

     

    STEVIE!!!

  20. NOTTHEBUS on 16TH FEBRUARY 2019 5:14 PM

     

     

    The huns 3pts better off than they were last season…the worst in thier top flight history

     

     

     

    Will anyone in the media call SG out as the flop he is?

     

     

    I bloody well hope not.

     

    This mercurial coach deserves all our support as he accelerates them ever faster to their financial demise.

     

    They may not disappear unfortunately but their reckless spending will hamper them financially for the foreseeable future.

  21. Alasdair MacLean on

    For all Sneerin Steven’s nouse and top signings from his in-the-know influence in the EPL…..

     

     

    The only reason Sevco have remained in touch this sesson is down to a hare brain signing remnant from the discredited wee Portuguese mannie’s reign.

  22. Was like a mini hoot in my house today full of Celtic chat & everything else which provided an afternoon of mirth & merriment

     

     

    So I would like to thank all those who took time out to come & visit it was a big surprise but a most welcome one at that

     

     

    Thanks to CRC, Lionsroar, Marsapa TommyTwistsTommyTurns, Tommy, Lennybhoy ,NorrieM

     

     

    Thanks Guys

  23. Alasdair MacLean on

    Tontine Tim,

     

     

    Had to google that one!

     

    Had no idea….but yes, it seems so….

     

     

    Nothing against the Jonatan Johansson, Morton manager, after they held Ayr today!

  24. SAINT STIVS on 16TH FEBRUARY 2019 5:26 PM

     

    rangers media has a good thread on what they really need to do, and that is add 12,000 seats to ibrox. as they have 12000 on the waiting list. and the pay back time will only be `10 years.

     

     

     

    dave cunning ham king will be working on a debenture plan right now to get these bears to buy thier ten year seats off plan.

     

     

     

    the old loyalty card, if celtic had done me out of shares, debenture seats, my wee gold plaque on it, and maybe even my business out of some monies, i would need to be some fool to ever spend money on the new entity, i mean how thick are these peepel.

     

    ———-

     

    SS- Extremely thick is the answer, dumb as feck.

     

     

    It’s great innit ???

     

     

    ????????? – – – Loading

     

     

    Any lurking sevcoites GIRFUY

     

     

    D. :)

  25. i'vehadtochangemymind on

    killie tomorrow – organised draoich and the ref will be expected to do his/her duty and we are a euro shipefest – difficult one.

  26. MAH

     

     

    Chuffed you had a grand old day to play for my Fhriend.

     

     

    Some right handsome bassas in that line up.

     

     

    Team photie would look like Take That and Boyzone in the wan room!!! ?

     

     

    Love ©️SOAL

     

     

    HH JG